Almost 7 months since I lost my husband Keith. I think I cry more now than I did in the weeks after his death. It doesn't take much to set me off (a song,a smell,a memory.) I am trying to keep it together for our children & his mother. But all I really want to do is lock myself in a room, assume the fetal position & cry until I can't cry anymore. But I can't. Must function, must pretend I have it all under control, when inside I feel I am slowly & painfully dying from missing him.
Dear Maria .... I do understand what you mean and there is no doubt the first year is a rough one, but it does get a little easier as time goes on. I know that doesn't mean much to you. My Ernie died April 27, 2011 and I still cry off and on. I get angry; frustrated; feel lonely like many of us on here. Grieving is part of human nature, but to me it seems so cruel it has to go on so long and we are left with 'whys' and we 'should have said ...' but it's just life. Your Keith is with you and I hope you take comfort in that. There are no words I can say to make you feel better because grieving is a journey we all have to take (our own road) with some help from our extended family on this forum.
I have kept my husband's jackets and a few of his sweaters because I just can't get rid of everything of his as if he never existed. I know how hard it is for you to hide your feelings, but there is no shame in crying in front of your children or your mother. I have no children and live alone so I can cry when I want too, but when I had a girlfriend stay with me for a bit I would have 'shower cries' because it was the only private place in the house I could just let the flood of tears burst out. Crying is a good thing and releases tension. Yes, we all feel like a piece of our heart and soul is missing without our loved one and in ways it is true. You are still fresh into your grieving and, in time, you will know when the time is right to take baby steps forward in the memory of your dear Keith. Lean on a good friend; see a Pastor and just talk about Keith; cry; talk about him and remember the good times you had together because the more youu talk about it the easier it becomes. You are, in ways, immortilizing him by talking about him. Don't ever let anyone tell you to 'move on' or, 'don't talk about Keith.' You have every right.
I'm praying for you Maria and hope your days ahead are getting more peaceful by the moment.
All of here have gone through or continue to deal with the emotional ride of healing. There is no time frame associated with it. What is important is that you continue to work on your grief and mourning. As you can tell from the replies here, we all understand and have felt similar feelings.
Things do become easier or more tolerable. Continue to work through your periods of grief. Give yourself credit for doing so. There are many people here that offer support. You will get through this and will find yourself helping others do the same.
Thanks everyone. I do have a strong support system and for that I am blessed. I just hate to have to depend on anyone, emotionally or physically. Like you said Mike, "there is no time frame" in the grieving process, but sometimes I feel like people want me to move on with my life so they don't feel uncomfortable. I had a patient at work look at my necklace and comment how beautiful it was (an infinity love memorial necklace with Keith's ashes in it) and she asked me where I got it. When I told her what it was she then proceeded to ask me why I was "still wearing my wedding rings if my husband was dead." I couldn't believe the nerve. I didn't even know this woman. Needless to say I got out of that exam room as quick as I could and headed to the restroom for a good cry. Other people tell me that I'm young and I'll meet someone else and remarry. Like that is supposed to make me feel better! They obviously never lost a spouse.
Maria ... We are always here for each other so while we are going down each of our own roads of grief and we stumble we are here to pick each other up. Most people are not use to depending emotionally or physically on others (I was very independent) but have learned when a hand is reached out to me I now take it. I hope to repay these kind people when they are going through a difficult time.
Actually I think Keith's ashes in your locket is a wonderful idea. I have my husband's ashes in a box where I put all the special occasion cards a red rose over it. We each have our own way of dealing with grief. You are in control of when and how you deal with grief and however long it takes until you are strong enough to move forward in your life. Never let anyone tell you differently. You owe no explainations to anyone as to what you wear and why. I still wear my wedding ring as well and why not! Some people are absolutely ignorant and unfortunately we sometimes run into them and will have to deal with them. Remember, our vessels are the body that holds the spirit so although Keith is not there in body he is there in spirit. Yes, one day your future will look brighter, but in your time and not anyone else's time. You are in the early stages of grief so choose your friends wisely (the ones that just let you talk about Keith and are there for you) and try your best to ignore others who try to tell you what you should be doing or feeling. You are stronger than you think. The thing I enjoy the most about being older is I just come out and say, 'When you've walked a mile in shoes then come and talk to me!' I never get a reply back and that person never brings the subject up again.
Hang on Maria and my prayers are flying your way.
Marge ... I am so sorry you are having problems with family and friends. It reminds me of a quote '...forgive them for they know not what they do ...' from Jesus. You need to sit down with the closest members of your family (I did) and say it like it is! I will look up a link to give you so you can print out the material on 'How family and friends can help and accept your loss.' It also expresses how the family feels. Easier for them to bury their heads in the sand because they feel the loss as well, but don't have the many memories your dear husband and you had, but want 'you' back again. What they don't realize is that no matter how much better you get in the future you will never quite be yourself again and there will be the 'new you.'
There must be one friend that will be there for you when you need them. Choose that friend, have them over and express your concerns and let them know what you need such as perhaps shopping together; the odd dinner out; walks, etc. One baby step at a time. I am fortunate to have one very faithful girlfriend that stands by my side and she was not the person I thought would be there for me so much, but is.The ones I thought would be because I was there 110% for them have faded away slowly.
Family and friends can try all they like to make suggestions, but look them straight in the eye and say 'when you have walked a mile in my shoes then you have a right to dictate to me. Until then realize that my life long partner is gone and I am left alone wondering what this new adventure of grief will bring. It is a tough journey.'
You can do all the above Marge even if you start crying or end up crying. You need to reach out and express yourself. Don't allow bullying for that is exactly what it is. Grieving should bring family closer together and not put them farther apart. I don't expect them to feel my entire pain of losing my husband, but do expect their empathy and we all have a heart where we should care enough to stand by a person going through the grieving process and there are simply no excuses for not doing so.
You have us here to help you through this rought patches. I'm having a couple of bad days too and I still cry after losing my husband a year and a half ago, but when I look back things are getting a wee bit better. There is simply no time limit to individual's grief.
Sleep is the best thing for you right now so early in your grieving process. You are so lucky to escape while sleeping because I have unnerving dreams even if I take a nap. I know it's the fear of being plunged into a whole new world and being alone. Until grief lets up we have to flow with it; do the best we can and eventually some of the fog of grief will lift so you can do more things away from home where the memories are. A few hours of walking or shopping (even if you don't buy anything) a conversation with a girlfriend or even a male friend will make you feel slightly better even if you don't think so at the moment.
Please hang in there and realize that we are here; all of us going through different phases in our journey of grief. I would like to suggest that you either try going to church (sit at the back of the church if you feel like it) or, seek grief counseling. See your family doctor and express your concerns. True, the journey of grief for each of us is a lonely road we must take with twists and bumps along the way, but eventually the path of grief becomes smoother.
Please come back to us and I will be sure to be here for you tonight. Just keep talking!
Big Bear Hugs
Marge ... you are so welcome. The members are wonderful on here and when one of us falls (and we do) they are there to pick us up. God has brought us all together for a good reason.
I pray you have a better day tomorrow. Try going for that walk or go shopping at places you liked to shop before. It works wonders to get your mind of things if only for a little while.